Are you one of the approximately 12 million individuals in the United States who was misdiagnosed this year? Roughly half of those patients face severe harm as a result of their misdiagnoses.
Not only can misdiagnoses delay proper treatment to be rendered, being misdiagnosed can cause you to be exposed to harmful treatments or surgeries for conditions you do not suffer from. Each year, around 40,500 people are admitted to intensive care units with misdiagnoses that prove to be fatal.
Could my misdiagnosis have been prevented?
One specialist in hospital medicine stated that misdiagnoses “happen more often than it’s been reported,” which is alarming. Because diseases present differently in women than in men, females are at particular risk. A poll of doctors determined that a whopping 96% believe that numerous diagnostic errors are preventable.
Below are some steps to take to reduce the likelihood of your being misdiagnosed:
- Ask questions at your doctor’s appointment. It’s a good idea to bring along a friend or family member to ask questions as well.
- Bring copies of lab work ordered by other providers
- Have a concise copy of your relevant medical history present health condition
- Make a list of all prescription and over the counter (OTC) meds and supplements you are taking, as well as dosages and frequency
Never be afraid to ask your doctor to explain a complex procedure or treatment a second or even third time. Your doctor is there to answer your questions. If they appear to get impatient or rudely brush off your concerns, this might be a sign that it’s time to find a different physician to treat your condition.
If you were harmed or your condition worsened by a misdiagnosis, learn about your rights under Georgia law to seek compensation for your losses and damages.